Dr. Timothy Wang Awarded Leading Prize in Gastroenterology

Timothy C. Wang, MD, a member of Columbia University's Herbert Irving Comprehensive Cancer (HICCC), has been awarded the prestigious William Beaumont Prize in Gastroenterology by the American Gastroenterological Association (AGA). Dr. Wang, who is chief of the Division of Digestive and Liver Diseases in Columbia's Department of Medicine, is being honored for his work in defining the mechanisms and cellular origins of Barrett's esophagus and gastroesophageal cancer. The William Beaumont Prize in Gastroenterology recognizes an individual "who has made a unique, outstanding contribution of major importance to the field of gastroenterology".

Dr. Wang, who has served AGA in numerous positions, including as president of the AGA Institute, also is the Dorothy L. and Daniel H. Silberberg Professor of Medicine at the Vagelos College of Physicians and Surgeons. At Columbia, Dr. Wang leads a team of investigators and the Tumor Microenvironment program that are exploring broadly the role of the tumor microenvironment in promoting the growth of both gastric and liver cancer. His lab was the first to show that overexpression of a single proinflammatory cytokine (IL-1beta) can induce cancer in a mouse (Cancer Cell 2008). His group also was one of the first to demonstrate roles for bone marrow-derived stem cells (BMDC's) in contributing to gastric cancer, and his group has continued to explore roles for BMDC's as precursors of cancer-associated fibroblasts, myeloid derived suppressor cells and also dysplastic epithelial cells.